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Amazon’s Ring wants to collect information from 911 calls

Ring continues cozying up to law enforcement.
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Smith Collection/Gado via Getty Images

Amazon's smart doorbell division Ring is angling for access to 911 caller data, a report by Gizmodo reveals. As part of its Neighbors app, which provides information about crimes in users' local areas, Ring is seeking to access data from the computer-aided dispatch (CAD) feeds used by emergency call responders.

Across the country, 225 police departments have already agreed to cooperate with Ring to join its "law enforcement portal". The portal makes it easy for the police to request video from Ring cameras, although users are not obliged to comply with the requests.

Now Ring is seeking further access to CAD information. This is a record of information provided by 911 callers including names, medical information, addresses, and even location. In an email to Gizmodo, Ring confirmed it "does receive location information, including precise addresses from CAD data, which it does not publish to its app." This information is then pushed to nearby Ring users as crime news.

The information shared covers serious crimes including assault, rape, theft, and deaths, as well as more minor crimes like trespassing and vandalism, according to internal documents obtained by Gizmodo.

The relationship between Ring and law enforcement continues to get worryingly close, with Amazon providing free Ring units which are advertised by and given away by police departments. And the data collected by Ring units may be less secure than users imagine, with reports that Ring gave its employees access to customer video feeds.

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